Saturday, June 16, 2012

Japanese Grocery Store Vs. Base Commissary

At the risk of becoming annoyingly repetitive, I just can't say this enough.  Shopping at a Japanese grocery store does not have to be a checkbook-blowing horror story!  So many of us military spouses get pounded with the "that country is so expensive" mantra before even moving to Japan; we take it as undeniable truth and don't even think to go anywhere besides the Commissary to buy food.  Sometimes this is absolutely true ($30 for a watermelon, anyone? Saw that one this week).  Other times, the deals at Japanese grocery stores, whether it's a end-of-the-day sale or an item that is in season, knock the prices down to a Commissary-competitive level.  Add in the superior quality and freshness from a Japanese grocery store, and the Commissary can be blown completely out of the water.  

Below is one of my recent grocery store purchases.

Clockwise from top left:  Bag of onions, bundle of baby asparagus, two packages of garden tomatoes, a package of sprouts, a package of tofu, a garlic, a box of chocolate almonds, and a leafy stick of celery.
All that, my friends (Including the incredibly tender baby asparagus.  Take that, giant, woody Commissary asparagus!), cost 1,061 yen ($13.34).  Not bad for a purchase that included baby asparagus, sprouts (Commissary doesn't even carry those), and two packs of garden tomatoes (not mildewed like the Commissary garden tomatoes often are).  I wasn't able to get to the Commissary in time to do a complete price comparison, so this isn't a true Japanese Grocery Store Vs. Base Commissary round.  But I hope it still motivates you to hop on down to your closest Japanese grocery store and try some shopping there!


-The Tofu Fox

Disclaimer:  I do my best to make sure all my information is accurate.  However, details may change or I may just be flat-out wrong.  Please let me know if something needs a correction.  Thank-you!d


  1. I have a very similar post in my drafts folder...hopefully I'll get around to finishing it and posting it soon!

    Loving your blog!